284 pages | 23 B/W Illus.
This volume explores how India as a geographical space was constructed by the British colonial regime in visual and material terms. It demonstrates the instrumentalization of cultural artefacts such as landscape paintings, travel literature and cartography, as spatial practices overtly carrying scientific truth claims, to materially produce artificial spaces that reinforced power relations. It sheds light on the primary dominanceof cartographic reason in the age of European Enlightenment which framed aesthetic and scientific modes of representations and imaginations.The author cross-examines this imperial gaze as a visual perspective which bore the material inscriptions of a will to assert, possess and control. The distinguishing theme in this study is the production of India as a new geography sourced from Britain's own interaction with its rural outskirts and domination in its fringes.
Rethinking colonial constructions of modern India, this volume will be of immense interest to scholars and researchers of modern history, cultural geography, colonial studies, English literature, cultural studies, art, visual studies and area studies.
Introduction: Maps, Landscapes, Travelogues: Spatial Articulation and Imperial Eyes
Part I Cartographic Imagination
1. The Onset and Dominance of Cartographic Reason
2. Mapping India: Rennell and Lambton
Part II Landscapes of Control
3. Estates, Gardens and Enclosures: The Aesthetic Framing of British Landscapes
4. Framing India: Chinnery and D’Oyly
Part III Narrativising Travel
5. Place and Identity: Travel Narratives in the Making of Britain
6. Narrating India: Hodges, Heber, Fraser and Hooker